“Using data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Consumer Expenditure Survey and the U.S. Census Bureau’s Current Population Survey, the researchers challenge common misconceptions created by the official government poverty data. According to the researchers, consumption, which measures what families are able to purchase in terms of food, housing, transportation and other goods and services, offers a better indicator of economic well-being than income, which can fluctuate for reasons unrelated to well-being.

Between 1980 and 2022, consumption poverty fell from 33.8 percent to 6.0 percent, even though the official poverty rate indicated a drop by only 1.5 percentage points over that same period.”

From Notre Dame News.